By Patrick Cochran:
For many colleges, making it to the championship game is an achievement in itself.
However, for City College head coach George Rush, just making it to the big game is not acceptable.
A crushing 35-14 loss to Bakersfield College in the 2012 California Community College Athletic Association championship game left a bitter taste in the coach’s mouth.
“It was hard. I knew we had a really good team last year,” Rush said. “The game versus Bakersfield did not end the way we wanted it to.”
Rush has been at the helm of the program for 35 years and has had unparalleled success at City College.
One of the biggest positives for the Rams this season is the return of star quarterback Turner Baty.
In The 2011 CCCAA championship game Baty earned game MVP and led the Rams to a thrilling 52-42 victory over Mount San Antonio College.
Baty transferred to Kansas University after his freshman campaign to play under former New England Patriots offensive coordinator Charlie Weis.
“Playing at Kansas didn’t end up the way I wanted it to. I am so glad to be back at City College,” Baty said. “I really think we can repeat the success we had during my last season in 2011.”
The Rams expect big things from Baty’s return.
“Turner and the passing game are the focal point of our offense,” Rush said.
Rush said that the offensive line, a key aspect of the 2012 team, would not be easy to replace.
Opposing teams will be kept guessing by the Rams multiple defensive fronts.
Rush is excited about free safety Shalom Lavant, saying he has the perfect size and speed to make an impact on defense.
The predominantly freshmen team is an area of concern for the Rams. The roster consists of 58 freshmen out of the 80 players.
“[We] lose a lot of kids every year. [It’s the] nature of junior college,” Rush said.